This day, my heart overflows with gratitude for the lessons which I have learned this year.
I’ve learned that sometimes people do things which we’d prefer that they did not do; but that what they choose to do reflects something about them, not about us.
I’ve learned that when someone betrays your trust, that also reflects something about their trustworthiness and not about the essential virtue of trusting.
I’ve learned that most folks will recognize need and reach to fulfill it, even at their own risk.
I’ve learned to hear the small, timid voice within myself, which serves as my moral compass.
I’ve embraced changed, and come to realize that evolution will not necessarily bring extinction.
I see that I can identify actions which I’ve taken that I might not take again without castigating myself for those choices.
I’ve been shown that I have a lovely heart, by people who’ve seen me with ragged emotions and tears barely dried upon my cheeks.
I have given love, and have been calmed by the certainty that my gift came from my heart.
I have placed my hand in the hand of a man just days from death, who whispered, I know you love me, honey, and realized that l did, indeed, love him without reservation, and that my life had been immeasurably enriched because of it.
That same man accepted me, in all my imperfection, and because he did, I came to know my own worth as measured by another.
I have heard the true voices of friends who place loyalty above all else, and from the song sung by those voices, I have learned the glory of music.
Tonight I learned that even before the sun rises, the day can turn from darkness to light; when a son reaches out to assess how his parent feels; when a friend sends a message of hope; when a person who truly cares bestows a radiant smile in my direction.
I am immeasurably grateful for these lessons. In a way, then, I am also grateful for the adversity which threatened my stability and created the venue for my education.
Dennis Lisenby called me a “weeble” on a fairly regular basis. He meant it as the most supreme of compliments. I’ll own it, now; and gladly so.